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Sink Your Teeth into Natural Dental Care

A Feel 21 Health Report

Dental care gains importance when you consider that according to Prescription for Nutritional Healing, periodontal disease (or periodontal infection, PI) ranks behind the common cold as the most prevalent infectious ailment in the U.S., affecting 75 percent of Americans over 35.

Poor dental health does not end with a toothache or bleeding gums. Research has shown that PI could be linked to a variety of more serious conditions, especially those involving the heart.

For example, research at the Department of Oral Biology, Shook of Dental Medicine, State University of New York at Buffalo, found that periodontal mocroorganisms were present inside the plaque of the heart's arteries, where they could play a role in promoting heart disease.

At the University of North Crolina at Chapel Hill, researchers examined 1,174 men in a long-term study, and found that having PI increases the risk of coronary heart diseases by 190 precent, fatal coronary disease by 190 percent, and stroke by 280 percent.

So, what can you do to prevent not only your teeth from getting worse, but maintain your overall health? Here is some expert advice that, with any luck, should have your whole body smiling.

  • Avoid sugar and all refined carbohydrates. Sugar causes plaque build-up and restricts white blood cells from fighting off bacteria.
  • Eat a varied diet that includes meats, green leafy vegetables, and fresh fruits, so that the teeth get proper exercise.
  • Change your toothbrush every month. Bacteria live on toothbrushes.
  • Floss at least once a day, s it helps reduce cavities.
  • Scrape your tongue each morning. Tongue scrapers are readily available, but you can also use the back of a spoon. The mélange of dead skin cells, food debris, and oral fluids on the tongue not only contribute to bad breath, but can also cause soft tissue breakdown and create inflammation.
  • Use a very soft natural-bristle toothbrush, and apply with care. A hard or even medium brush can cause severe damage to teeth immediately damage soft tissues surroundin the teeth.
  • To increase circulation in your gums, massage them with your fingers.
  • PI is contagious. If you have it, use causiton. Don't share utensils, drink, or engage in any activity where saliva is exchanged.
  • Aloe vera and strained cahmomile tea and calendual oil can help soothe gum tissues. Clove oil, which you might remember Laurence Olivier's evil Dr. Szell using in the movie Marathon Man , is good for the temporary relief of tooth and gum pain.
  • Signs that you might have PI include the following: Red, swollen or tender gums; abcesses; gums that have pulled away from the teeth; loose, shifting teeth; and persistent bad breath.

Test Your Knowledge About Natural Dental Care

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This article is reprinted with permission from Vitamin Retailer magazine and is provided for educational purposes only by your local retailer. No part of this article is intended as medical advice. Always consult your health care provider for any medical problems.

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